When you buy a new car you are so excited, its new and shiny! You have so many plans and good intentions for it. You know you will keep it clean. You know you will get the oil changed every 3000 miles. You know you will top off the fluids often. But as time goes on you begin to lose interest.
It stops being this new, shiny luxury and becomes the thing that just gets you from point A to point B. As humans we have short attention spans when we are careless. Soon we are looking at other people’s new cars and wanting what they have. You stop putting effort into it. 3000 miles between oil changes turns into 6000, and 9000, and even more. You can’t remember the last time you intentionally topped off the fluids before they ran out and you “had to.” You haven’t had a proper car wash in years.
As time goes on your once “new” and “shiny” car is deteriorating before your eyes. It is broken, dirty and lost even more of its value in your eyes. Do you see where I am going with this? This is the reality for millions of people. But we aren’t talking about their cars, we are talking about their marriages.
Ephesians 4:2-3 says “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of faith.” Obviously different versions will differ slightly, but I think this one is my favorite.
This verse is talking about our connection to the Holy Spirit and our love for others. I think this is definitely applicable when talking about the spiritual bond and love in marriage! When you say I do you are not just creating a covenant with your spouse, but also with the Lord. “Make every effort…” I think that is just spot on! That is how we are called to love one another, especially our spouses!
God doesn’t call us to “try to make it work.” “Making it work” isn’t a request, it is an expectation. God knows how hard that can be for us though, so he tells us just how to do it. He tells us to put our every effort into our love. Unlike the movies would have you believe, love isn’t something that is out of our control. To love is a choice, because just like with a new car the infatuation may fade over time, but the care and devotion you put into it doesn’t have to.
People with happy, healthy, and God-centered marriages aren’t just simply lucky. They put effort into each other even when times are good, and a little extra when they aren’t. Just like with a car you have to stay on top of the upkeep if you want it to run at its best.
That isn’t saying that if your car has some dents, rust and even if it is broken down that you have to sell it and find a new one! Quite the contrary, because we have the best mechanic in the universe on our side! On our own we cannot fully restore our broken down car to its former glory and even beyond that. However, we have a truly amazing God. With him, with this incredible mechanic, anything is possible.
If you are not yet married I hope this post has given you some insight about the commitment of marriage.
If you are married and in a good place, do not take your marriage for granted. Don’t let it deteriorate! Stay on top of the upkeep because during the drive you will hit bumpy patches. Make sure your car is prepared for them as best as it can be.
If you are married and in a difficult place, even one where all seems lost, do not lose hope. Jesus told us, “…with God all things are possible.” When you put in your every effort and put God into the center of your marriage, amazing things will happen. God has the power to heal the wounds you may have in your marriage. He also has the power to heal the wounds in your own heart. Remember, we have the best mechanic on our side.
God Bless and Happy Tuesday!